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Paranormal Experience: Trapped in a Lucid Dream

This paranormal experience was submitted by Kathleen:

Sometime back in September of 2014, I had a lucid dream from which I could not wake up. The alarm went off on a weekday morning, I hit snooze as I normally do, and fell back to sleep for about 45 minutes or so.

In my dream, I woke up in my bed, and got up to get ready for work. The room was dark except for my essential oil diffuser, giving off a dim glow. I crossed the room and switched on the light, but nothing happened.

I then opened the bedroom door to go to the bathroom, and the minute I stepped out of my bedroom, my legs turned to rubber. I could barely stand, grabbing the walls like I was beyond intoxicated. I managed to reach the bathroom doorway, reached for the light switch, and again, nothing but darkness. I thought the power was out, until I remembered the oil diffuser was working.

I made it back to my bedroom, and the minute I stepped inside, I was able to stand and walk again with no problem. It was then I realized I was dreaming. I tried the light switch again, nothing. Stepped outside my bedroom, and again could not walk.

Now I became scared. I started to tell myself to wake up over and over again until I was screaming it out loud. I also screamed at the “thing” I felt was keeping me trapped in my dream. (We’ve had some strange occurrences in our house lately.)

Then my other clock radio turned on, and a man’s voice began speaking about a hypnosis track that was about to begin. OH HELL NO, I thought, and jerked the power cord out of the wall, fully expecting it to continue playing, like in all the horror movies. To my relief, it did not.

I looked in my bedroom mirror at my reflection in this dim light. My hair was a mess, and I looked as crazy as I felt. I continued to try to wake myself from this awful dream.

Finally my alarm went off again, and I awoke, probably the only time in my life I was so happy to hear my alarm. I have not yet had another lucid dream and hope I never have another one like this! I was truly terrified.

Experiencing a False Awakening

You are not alone, Kathleen. What you experienced is called a false awakening. You dream that you wake up, or you dream that you get up out of bed and go on about your normal routine, only to find that nothing works like it’s supposed to. You then realize you’re dreaming and try to wake up. Sometimes you’re successful but often you are trapped in the dream.

How To Wake Yourself Up

I believe one of the reasons it’s difficult to wake up in this situation is because your mind is already awake, but your body is still in the sleep state. One way people are able to wake themselves up when they need to is to fall backwards. Like you’re falling backwards into a swimming pool. Most people will jerk awake when they hit the dream floor, or you might even go through it. But the sensation of falling is often enough to trigger a true awakening.

If I’m ever truly trapped and can’t wake myself up, I start changing the nature of the dreamscape so it’s not as terrifying. If I need to battle something, I make short work of it. But what you’ve described is fairly common among lucid dreamers.

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And often it’s something in our real environment that wakes us up, thankfully!

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